Comedy Central Productions

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Logo descriptions by James Fabiano, Matt Williams, and BenderRoblox Logo captures by WyraachUr, V of Doom, BenderRoblox, wolfie14, superpooper180, Originalsboy11, Logoboy95, RedheadXilamGuy, and ENunn Editions by mr3urious, WyraachUr, BenderRoblox, and Jonathan Hendricks

Background

Before the name "Comedy Central" existed, the network was owned by an outfit called "Comedy Partners" founded by none other than Viacom, Inc. and Time-Life (later Time Warner). Time Warner's HBO unit had expanded into basic cable with a channel called "The Comedy Channel". Similarly, Viacom was operating "Ha! TV Comedy Network". After both channels took a hit, the two compromised and created a jointly-owned company as "Comedy Partners", merging both channels into "CTV: The Comedy Network", but later renamed it to "Comedy Central" in order to save confusion from Canada's CTV network. In April 2003, Time Warner sold their half of Comedy Partners for $1.23 billion, resulting in Viacom owning 100% of Comedy Central and the network was made part of the MTV Networks (now the "Viacom Media Networks").

1st Logo (November 1991-March 25, 1995)

Nicknames: "The Tires", "The Tire Junkyard"

Logo: The Comedy Central globe of the era (which does not tilt to the side, has yellow text, and a heliotrope top) is posed on the background of several, rusty tires on a junkyard. The "COMEDY-CENTRAL" marquee spins around from time to time.

FX/SFX: The "COMEDY-CENTRAL" marquee spinning around.

Music/Sounds/Voice-over: Penn Jillette saying, "This has been a presentation from Comedy Central!".

Availability: Uncommon. It's seen on the CC-era of Mystery Science Theater 3000 (MST3K) up to the sixth season on VHS tapes. Also seen on several Comedy Central shows from the era. Most episodes of MST3K on PlutoTV and DVD releases have this and the HBO Downtown Productions logo removed; however, they can still be seen on one episode, "The Rebel Set".

Editor's Note: None.

2nd Logo (March 25, 1995-June 5, 1996)

Nicknames: "Comedy Central on the Moon", "Building Earthquake"

Logo: Up against a black background, we see the normal 1995 Comedy Central globe from the era emitting blue circles with cheesy drawings of buildings below that move around and a giant moon to the left showing a reverse version of the Comedy Central globe spinning rapidly.

Variant: On season seven of MST3K, the logo fades in and is silent.

FX/SFX: The Comedy Central logo on the moon spinning and the Comedy Central logo emitting blue circles.

Music/Sounds/Voice-over: Penn Jillette says: "This has been a presentation from Comedy Central" along with the network's generic tune playing throughout (some drums playing against whistling), and ending with a man shouting "HEY!".

Availability: Seen on season one episodes of Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist on DVD and VHS, and season seven of MST3K on VHS. This logo and the HBO Downtown Productions logo are retained on at least one episode of MST3K on PlutoTV, "The Starfighters".

Editor's Note: None.

3rd Logo (June 5, 1996-November 30, 1997)

Nicknames: "The ATM", "Comedy Central ATM"

Logo: It begins with a shot of a credit card being inserted into what is presumably an ATM. It then switches to a shot of an ATM screen, whose text, in green, is being "drawn" down from top to bottom and in a computer-type font. The text reads "THIS HAS BEEN A PRESENTATION OF:", followed by the Comedy Central logo (in green, and with the logo tilted to its side with the name written in a different font), and then "THANK YOU FOR YOUR PATRONAGE" appears under the logo. The last line "blinks" a few times, becoming highlighted in green with the text in black.

Variants:

  • An interesting edit exists on the first three episodes of South Park where the "credit card" animation was kept in, but the screen in the ATM was cut because it was abruptly switched to the 4th logo.
  • Similar to the next logo, South Park episodes on their website have a copyright stamp added to the logo, along with the Comedy Central URL.

FX/SFX: The credit card being inserted, which appears to be live-action, and the ATM screen, which is CGI.

Music/Sounds: The whirring of the credit card being inserted and the "beeping" sounds, like a real ATM.

Availability: Uncommon. It's seen on Comedy Central shows of the period. Preserved on DVDs and VHS tapes of early South Park episodes (it is removed on season 1 DVD set), along with seasons two, three and four of Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist. The credit card animation was still retained on some early episodes of Win Ben Stein's Money when it was aired on GSN.

Editor's Note: None.

4th Logo (August 13, 1997-December 1, 1999)

Nicknames: "The Transmitter", "Yellow Rings"

Logo: On a background with wavy blue and gray lines, a slightly revamped version of the Comedy Central logo appears at the bottom (in blue and yellow), at first distorted, but quickly sharpening up. The transmitter on the top of the logo "activates" and then many yellow "this has been a presentation of" rings begin to emerge from the transmitter. A white copyright stamp is shown below, along with the "comedycentral.com" URL.

Trivia: Comedy Central's logo was slightly redesigned during this period, to give it a more smoother look; most notably, the small hyphen ( - ) from the "COMEDY CENTRAL" marquee was removed.

Variant: Sometimes, the logo has no copyright stamp; only the URL in black. South Park episodes that did not have it were later added below on the southparkstudios.com versions.

FX/SFX: The "transmitter" effects. This was done by H-Gun Studios in Chicago, IL.

Music/Sounds: An "interference" sound followed by loud synth "bong" sounds as the "rings" come out from the transmitter, or the closing theme of the show.

Music/Sound Variant: A variant with different synth "bong" sounds was seen on South Park S1 episode "Cartman's Mom is a Dirty S**t".

Availability: Common. It first appeared on the first episode of South Park as part of the variant for the previous logo. Preserved on recent showings of early episodes of South Park on Comedy Central and the South Park Studios website along with DVDs. Unfortunately, compressed credits prevent it from being seen the way it was meant to be. Preserved on DVDs and VHS tapes of season five and the first six episodes of season six of Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist, earlier episodes of Bob and Margret and on Comedy Central Presents episodes from the era, although the first episode is plastered by the sixth logo.

Editor's Note: This logo was/is a favorite of many.

5th Logo (May 29, 1999-January 21, 2001, February 13, 2002)

Nicknames: "The Bubbles", "Comedy Central Aura"

Logo: On a background with what looks like bubbles floating around, the Comedy Central logo, now in white, zooms-in from the center of the screen, glowing. Above it is "THIS HAS BEEN A PRESENTATION OF...", and below it is the copyright stamp for the show (usually © [YEAR] Comedy Partners, Inc. All Rights Reserved). This logo has five different color palettes:

  • Silver background with red and silver bubbles.
  • Blue background with dark blue bubbles.
  • Green background with green and dark green bubbles.
  • Red background with dark red bubbles.
  • Urobilin background with urobilin bubbles.
  • Purple background with purple bubbles.

Variants:

  • On South Park episodes on Comedy Central with compressed credits, the "zooming-in" portion of the logo is removed.
  • In later years, the URL "www.comedycentral.com" was seen at the bottom.
  • A copyright stamp was added on the South Park episodes shown at "southparkstudios.com".
  • A variant exists where the logo switches between the blue/dark blue, silver/red, and green/dark green palettes quickly.

FX/SFX: The zoom-in and logo design are rather generic, especially compared to the last one.

Music/Sounds: A low "WHOOSH" as the logo zooms in, followed by a hip hop and techno drum fanfare, a techno theme, or the closing theme of the show.

Music/Sounds Variant: On Comedy Central Presents, the last part of the RickMill Productions logo theme plays over the logo. On Don't Forget Your Toothbrush and South Park, it's the sound of muffled slushing and bubbling.

Availability: The silver/red/silver, blue/dark blue, green/green/dark green and red/dark red ones are uncommon, the yellow and purple ones are rare. First seen on season 2 episodes of Comedy Central Presents and last seen on the Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist episode "Lerapy". The airings of South Park episodes from this era on Comedy Central have the blue logo, albeit compressed and with the first variant for the logo; however, it is completely preserved on "southparkstudios.com". Nearly all of the colors can be found on DVDs of Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist episodes from the era. It also appeared on Craig Kilborn/early Jon Stewart-era The Daily Show episodes and Comedy Central Presents episodes from the era. The blue version can also be seen on the DVD of Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, at the end of Comedy Central's Canned Ham: The Dr. Evil Story (a fake documentary tying in with the film).

Editor's Note: None.

6th Logo (October 2000-May 28, 2004)

Logo: Over a shaded orange background, we see lots of yellow circles zooming toward the viewer. The circles have zooms-up bits of the current Comedy Central logo (much like the original, but looking more abstract, with different buildings and a different font) and other text to be seen at the end product. When the circles are done, we are treated with the end product, the updated Comedy Central logo in the center with "THIS HAS BEEN A PRESENTATION OF" above in black, and "comedycentral.com" below, in white. There is a backdrop of circles zooming behind the logo.

Variants:

  • On later seasons of South Park, this logo starts with the finished product on many episodes, bypassing the circles. A copyright stamp for Comedy Partners is included. A few episodes keep the animation as usual, but still have the copyright notice plastered over all the animation. The first variant also appeared on Comedy Central Presents.
  • Versions where the background is blue or green instead of orange exist.
  • Current reruns of South Park keep this logo intact; however, it is part of the split screen credits. Therefore, sometimes the logo is extended to fit with the length of the commercial (in case it is too long). This is done by having the logo play as normal with the last bit of the circle animation going on a continuous loop when the finished product appears.

FX/SFX: Pretty inspired animation.

Music/Sounds: A bass sounder that loops itself, not unlike music heard on Comedy Central's commercial tags at the time.

Music/Sounds Variant: Sometimes, if the logo is plastering older Comedy Central logos, the original logo's audio will still be heard.

Availability: Common. It seen on programs from the time, such as South Park and Comedy Central Presents. The audio variant could be heard on later prints of the un-aired South Park pilot, as well as the remastered prints of early seasons of said show. The blue background variant appears on the TV movie Windy City Heat, and on Gerhard Reinke's Wanderlust. The green variant appeared on Beat the Geeks.

Editor's Note: None.

7th Logo (2004- )

Logo: Just the in-credit text "THIS HAS BEEN A PRESENTATION OF COMEDY CENTRAL" with a copyright stamp below.

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: The closing theme of the show.

Availability: Seen on all recent Comedy Central originals.

Editor's Note: None.

8th Logo (2004-2005?)

Nickname: "Hip-Hop Central"

Logo: On a yellow-orange background, we see the movements of various graffiti styles and a grunge-like Comedy Central logo, then it zooms in to the logo in the center with "this has been a presentation of" above in, and "comedycentral.com" below.

FX/SFX: Graffiti animation.

Music/Sounds: A hip-hop/techno tune.

Availability: Seen on the pilot of Crank Yankers coming from the 2004 DVD release.

Editor's Note: None.

9th Logo (2004-2005?)

Nickname: "Hip-Hop Central II"

Logo: We see the then-current Comedy Central logo close up. It then zooms out and cuts to the text "THIS HAS BEEN" and "A PRESENTATION OF" sliding next to a melting white cube-like thing. "THIS HAS BEEN" flickers. It then cuts to the Comedy Central logo again. close up again as the text slides again on an angle. The white in the logo disappears as it turns black. The text flickers again and we see the logo appear once again in white. Everything flickers. as the logo changes position and from black to white. This all continues until it cuts to black.

Variant: There is a version that has the word "PRESENTATION" misspelled as "PRESENTATON".

FX/SFX: The flickers, the cuts.

Music/Sounds: A hip-hop/techno tune.

Availability: Seen on some prints of older South Park episodes and was also seen on a 2005 DVD release of season 2 of Reno 911!. This was most-likely used only for plastering older logos on later airings or home video releases, as it is unknown is it was originally used in episodes from the time this logo debuted.

Editor's Note: None.

10th Logo (2005-December 31, 2010)

Nickname: "Hip-Hop Central III"

Logo: Up against a lime green background, we see an extreme close-up of a white grunge-like Comedy Central logo with the circles in the letters "O" and "R" filled in, skewed to the right that flashes a bit, then it suddenly cuts to a normal version of the logo next to a green, white, and blue cloud with the text "PRODUCTIONS" in a grunge-like font with all circles filled in. A copyright stamp with the year of the South Park episode next to it appears below in white.

FX/SFX: None.

Music/Sounds: A bad guitar tune.

Availability: Rare. It used to be seen on syndicated reruns of South Park, among other Comedy Central shows such as The Sarah Silverman Program, but it has been deleted on most syndication prints now. It is still used in the UK.

Editor's Note: None.

11th Logo (January 1, 2011)

Nicknames: "The Double C", "Rapid Zooming", "Boredom Central"

Logo: Up against a robin's egg blue background, the camera zooms into the upper right corner of the new Comedy Central logo that features a black letter "C" inside a bigger reverse black "C", revealing the white bold text "COMEDY CENTRAL" with the new logo in the upper right corner of the text. We zoom into the new logo, revealing the "COMEDY CENTRAL" text from before, but with the word "CENTRAL" backwards. The new Comedy Central logo squeezes into the middle of the text.

Trivia: Comedy Central introduced the new logo on December 10, 2010 and debuted it on January 1, 2011.

FX/SFX: The rapid zoom-ins.

Music/Sounds: A cool rock tune, which is actually a piece of production music featured in many promos for other Viacom-owned networks (most notably Nickelodeon).

Availability: Common. Seen on the 2011 Comedy Central rebrand montage, but not on other shows.

Editor's Note: None.

12th Logo (2012-2019?)

Nicknames: "The Double C II", "Boredom Central II", "Computer-Distorted C"

Logo: On a dark-gray background, the two Cs from the previous logo briefly wipe in while flickering. Then, the remaining "COMEDY" and "CENTRAL" (with "CENTRAL" upside-down) appear in between, left and right respectively. The final result has a robin's egg blue color similar to the background of the previous logo. A copyright stamp appears below.

FX/SFX: The wiping of the logo and the text appearing.

Music/Sounds: Three electronic xylophone notes, followed by two high synth notes. A noise sounding like a TV tuner interference can also be heard in the background.

Availability: Appears on international (including Latin American) prints of Comedy Central programs.

Editor's Note: None.

13th Logo (2012-2018)

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Nicknames: "The Double C III", "Rapid Zooming II", "Boredom Central III", "Seizure C"

Logo: It's pretty similar to the 10th logo, but the logo is mainly in black and white and is switching in negatives at some points, causing a "strobe light" effect. When we zoom into the trademark logo, the background flashes in orange and a second Comedy Central logo zooms in. We zoom in again and see the Comedy Central logo fully revealed. After a few seconds, the Comedy Central trademark logo zooms into the screen, with the letters spinning, as the background flashes again with orange.

FX/SFX: The rapid zoom-ins and flashing colors.

Music/Sounds: A distorted bass sounder.

Availability: Common. It can be seen on newer Comedy Central shows, especially on online prints from Hulu and iTunes. Oddly enough, the Victorious episode "How Trina Got In" on Netflix has this logo at the beginning.

Editor's Note: None.

14th Logo (2018-)

Nicknames: "The Double C IV", "Boredom Central IV", "Comedy Sans", "Scrolling Central"

Logo: There are two different variants:

  • 2018-2019: On a white background, the same C logo from before flies down into place, with "COMEDY CENTRAL" in a different font next to it, scrolling (the text also scrolls, looping) before stopping in the middle as the background changes to black.
  • 2019-: The looping text from 2018 scrolls down the screen on the same white background, before stopping at the same position as last time. The text recedes back into the C, which then zooms into the center of the screen.

FX/SFX: 2D Animation.

Music/Sounds: A techno theme, which is extended in the 2019 version.

Availability: Relatively brand new. It can be expected to plaster the previous logos on more recent South Park episodes.

Editor's Note: The new font is somewhat refreshing.